Fun Facts About Mozart
In my previous blog I wrote about how Mozart was one of my heroes. January was Mozart's birth month, so I'll do an occasional Mozart themed blog this month. In today’s blog I’d like to give you some facts you may not know about the man.
He was a Freemason
Mozart was initiated into the Vienna Freemasons in December 1784. His opera "The Magic Flute" is inspired by Masonry.
Mozart was only one of two children out of seven who survived infancy
Leopold and Anna Marie Mozart had seven children, but only two survived infancy: Maria Anna (nicknamed Nannerl) and Wolfgang. Mozart and his wife Constanze had six children, but only two survived. Karl Thomas Mozart (21 September 1784 - 31 October 1858), and Franz Xaver Wolfgang Mozart (26 July 1791 - 29 July 1844). Whilst Karl Thomas was a gifted pianist, he had an apprenticeship with a trading firm. He had hoped to open a piano shop, but lacked the funds to do so. Franz Xaver, became a professional musician, but lacked his father's extrovert character. Whilst Franz successful, it was a relatively small output. Neither son got married so the Mozart line ended when they passed.
Mozart was knighted at 14
In 1770, Mozart was awarded the Papal Order Of The Golden Spur. His father would make him sign his compositions "Cavaliere Amadeo", but Wolfgang would soon drop the formality and rarely used his title.
Mozart whiled away his time at the billiard table
In his downtime, Mozart liked to indulge in billiards and bowls. History has made the observation that he would hum his melodies at the billiard table occasionally stopping, to make brief notes on spontaneous ideas. Apparently he favoured playing alone, perhaps for that very reason.
He was an animal lover
The Mozarts had a pet dog (a fox terrier). Mozart himself had a pet starling - which could sing a theme from his 17th Piano Concerto...whether the Piano Concerto came first, or Mozart was inspired by the starling; I don't know!
There is a frog named after Mozart
The "Eleutherodactylus Amadeus" is a Haitian frog species. It has a striking spectrum of sound frequencies it produces and the similarity between these and musical notes is what gives this frog its name.